Les Petits Contes

About life's little observations, which matter. About hilarious situations, which illuminate. About stories which offer immense possibilities, open endings, different interpretations and perspectives.

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Location: Singapore

A nature lover; sun-worshipper, manic book-collector, dessert-devourer and a magnet for hazards

Monday, July 10, 2006

Cooking Up a Storm in Chiang Mai


For me, it was more like cooking up a sweat!

There were four of us at Sompon’s ‘’masterclass’’ (at Chiang Mai Thai Cookery School) and guess who was the most inexperienced? Moi.

I could not light the stove on my own, (blame it on the ‘’problem with the stove’’) could not hold the knife the ‘’professional way’’ and was gauche in handling the wok and ladle (blame it on my being left-handed)!

With a bad cough and cold torturing my poor splitting head, I could not remember the steps and kept asking around, not to mention was the slowest in the group. There were tonnes of things to cut and chop.

I stared at the sotong blur-ly and looked around, trying to ‘’spy’’ at my friends, to see how they cut it. ‘’What are you looking for?’’ Sompon asked.

Then he asked me to shell the prawn and de-vein it while holding it down flat on the chopping board with my palm flat. I held up the prawn gingerly in mid air, tilted my head in full concentration and fiddled with it carefully with my little knife instead. ‘’What do you think you are you doing?’’ Sompon asked this time.

On another day, we took up another cooking class at another school – Kao Hom. There were five of us this time. I was the slowest again to complete my tasks, especially wrapping that wretched ‘’money bag’’ with wanton skin. I had some problems stirring my curry too. ‘’Do you cook at home?’’ Tim the instructor asked, as she hurried over to rescue the almost dried up gravy. I am sure she was not surprised to hear my weak ‘’er… no…’’

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